Top Ten Reasons I Love the Writers Police Academy, Part Two Last year was my first time at the Writers Police Academy and it was amazing. I wasn’t sure what to expect this year, but there was no need to fear: the 2017 WPA was awesome. Here’s why: 1. Road Tripping with Me, Myself, and … Continue reading Top Ten Reasons I Love the Writers Police Academy, Part Two
World building (generally associated with science fiction and fantasy) is essential for all writers. Whether you’re writing memoir, crime fiction, or romance, your world should come to life for the reader. Think of your world as another character. Good characters have flaws that make them more human and attractive to readers. Here’s why story world … Continue reading World Building: Why Flaws Matter
At last week’s Twin Cities’ Sisters in Crime meeting, noted mystery writers Jessie Chandler and Pat Dennis walked members through the “do’s and don’t’s” of writing a successful short story. Below are a few highlights from the workshop: A short story isn’t a seven-layer cake, it’s a cupcake. I like the visual of the short … Continue reading Workshops Aplenty: Short Story & World Building
I heard about the Writers’ Police Academy from my Sister in Crime, Jessie Chandler, and decided to go this year. It was awesome. Here’s why: Girls’ Road Trip. On Thursday morning, I took my first road trip in years (sans dog, child, and husband) with two up-and-coming crime writers, Michelle Kubitz and Emily Gorman. Although … Continue reading Top Ten Reasons I Love the Writers’ Police Academy
I won the Hugh Holton prize last year. The feedback from my mentor, Ted Hertel, has proved to be invaluable as I begin revising my first draft, and just winning the prize has been a great morale booster. I hope many of you will consider taking part in the program this year.
Last week we met in Plymouth at the Hennepin County Sheriff’s Office Emergency Communications Facility (ECF). The ECF houses both the data center and the PSAP or public-safety answering point (ie: 911 call center). The $32 million building, which opened in 2014, is an awe-inspiring hunk of concrete. The PSAP area of the facility is … Continue reading Citizen Law Enforcement Academy: Week 6 or The End
Last week’s class was held at the Law Enforcement Education Center on the campus of Hennepin Technical College in Brooklyn Park. We’re in for another jam-packed evening, meeting with members of the Hennepin County Sheriff's Office Community Engagement Team (CET) and representatives of the Professional Standards Division which includes Personnel and Range Instructors. The highlight of … Continue reading Citizen Law Enforcement Academy: Week 5
Last week, my friend Rose and I battled rush hour traffic to arrive at the Sheriff’s Crime Lab in Minneapolis on time. While I’m pumped to visit the crime lab, I have to admit I gave up on the television show CSI years ago after Director Gil Grissom fell in love (or lust or whatever) with a dominatrix named … Continue reading Citizen Law Enforcement Academy: Week 4
Last week’s class took us off the edge of the map and into Brooklyn Park where Hennepin County’s Enforcement Services is headquartered. Little did I know we were in for an action-packed evening of the “Lethal Weapon” kind, with demonstrations by the Emergency Services Department (ESD), Special Operations Unit (SOU) and Volunteer Services Department (VSD). … Continue reading Citizen Law Enforcement Academy: Week 3
About 13,000 writers flocked to Minneapolis last week for the Association of Writers & Writing Programs (AWP) Conference. I knew the conference catered to the literary (or as one presenter put it, “boring”) crowd, but since it included many workshops and a gigantic book fair and was being held here in town at a fairly reasonable … Continue reading The AWP Conference: Is It For Crime Writers?